In my correspondence and meetings with scientists active in the field, I have been surprised to realize that the full extent and the context of QCD discrepancies are unknown to many of them. The allegory I present below perfectly corresponds to a large portion of the topics discussed in this book, and to the internal logic that underlies each topic and that bridges the gap between them.
Discovery and Crisis
In the 1960s a giant cave was discovered in the Sahara Desert. The walls of this cave were covered with magnificent paintings drawn some eight thousand years ago. The paintings depicted individuals who were exceedingly tall.
The discovery had caused a palpable stir within the scientific community. It was clear that a new civilization had been found. But things didn’t add up. The scientists made two assumptions:
1. There was no available water in the region. The cave was located deep in the world’s largest desert.
2. The paintings depicted exceedingly tall individuals. It was estimated by scientists that some of them were approximately seven feet tall. Humans of this size could not have survived without plenty of food and water.
The new finding was troubling to scientists at the time, and it was known in textbooks as the sixties crisis. But in 1972, a new revolutionary idea began percolating into scientific literature. A group of scientists had demonstrated that there is a specific DNA sequence that produces exceedingly tall, highly intelligent living creatures who require no water at all to survive. The opposite is actually true—creatures with such DNA could not have survived next to a water source. The theory was known as Quasi Chain DNA (QCD).
Despite the fact that the theory was completely unprecedented in the realm of natural science, one of the scientists who proposed this theory was a leading figure in the field. It is for this reason that scientists decided to give the theory a chance and see whether other findings extracted from the cave were compatible with the theory.
The wall paintings showed a great distance between the figures they contained. When scientists examined the genetic sequences of QCD, they discovered that creatures that have such sequences prefer to engage in intercourse from a distance, the opposite of any other mammal known to science.
This special property of QCD creatures is known in literature as “sexual freedom,” and is considered to be evidence that supports the validity of QCD to this day. In 2004 a Nobel Prize was awarded to the three scientists who revealed sexual freedom.
It wasn’t long before the new theory garnered additional achievement. QCD scientists predicted that these creatures would prefer to live in three-member families. In 1978, an additional cave was found in the same region that contained new paintings. In those paintings there are three figures dancing, probably two parents with their child. These splendid paintings, known as the Three Dancers Event, are described as powerful evidence for QCD, even though human creatures with ordinary DNA behave in a similar fashion.
Even the earliest excavations revealed tools that were staggeringly identical to other agricultural tools found in North Africa. The resemblance remains unaccounted for to this day. Leading scientists in this field have said that these tools appear to contradict QCD.
In 1974 several pools were found near the cave. This discovery shocked scientists, since QCD creatures were unable to survive near water. However, scientists defended their theory by saying that the pools never contained any water. 
According to QCD, the unique genetic sequence of QCD individuals produces equally tall males and females. However, paintings found in the cave and in other caves in the region show that men were statistically taller than women. This finding was published in 1977, and its discoverers were sent to collect statistical data from other caves in order to corroborate it. In the 1980s additional findings were uncovered in other caves, indicating that, similar to humans, QCD males were also taller than females. However, QCD proponents argued that this discrepancy doesn’t preclude the possibility of future evidence that supports the theory.
The unique genetic sequences of QCD were also able to predict the social behavior of these creatures. Based on those sequences, scientists predicted that these creatures did not require gods or kings, as opposed to other human creatures. However, an independent group of researchers known as the Explorers of Mountain Caves (EMC) had discovered a palace and a shrine-like structure near the cave in 1983. This discovery flew in the face of predictions published before it came to light, and it remains unexplained to this day.
In 1987 EMC scientists had found additional caves with bedrooms and beds that were used by the QCD cave people. The size of the beds indicated that the creatures weren’t tall at all, and were in fact only slightly taller than five feet, a height similar to that of other humans living during that period. This discovery also remains unexplained to this day and appears to contradict QCD predictions.
In the 1990s the remnants of microorganisms that had lived inside the pools were found. This discovery indicated that the pools did in fact contain water. In the beginning of the twenty-first century, the pools also revealed the remains of fish skeletons. This provided irrefutable evidence that the pools did in fact contain water. The discovery remains unexplained to this day since the theory states that QCD creatures were unable to survive near water.
As years went by, many additional caves were discovered, allowing scientists to conduct statistical analyses. It was found that larger families had lived in smaller dwellings. This finding appeared to contradict the sexual freedom principle, as it indicated that many sexual interactions took place between creatures living in rather crowded spaces, as is the case for ordinary human beings, and therefore it contradicts QCD theory. Another troubling finding was revealed when paintings that showed two figures, most likely from different families, engaged in sexual intercourse. The paintings show that this interaction intensified the closer the figures were to each other. It also appears to contradict the behavior expected of QCD creatures, who supposedly enjoyed sexual freedom—namely, their sexual interaction should have diminished as they became closer to one another.
QCD experts meticulously analyzed the DNA sequences of QCD creatures and concluded that these creatures had skeletons that differed from those of humans. Based on this finding, scientists predicted that certain non-human-like bones would be found, known in literature as “exotic bones.” However, to this day no exotic bones have been discovered, despite extensive efforts to uncover them.
Several years before the cave discovery, scientists found channels in the region that looked like part of an irrigation system. Scientists adopted a theory called Violent Meteor Dominance (VMD), which argued that the channels had been formed by a meteor shower. VMD was taken seriously for a few decades, despite the fact that a meteor shower cannot produce straight channels. Later the VMD explanation was abandoned and removed from textbooks. The channel phenomenon was removed as well, probably because it cannot be explained by QCD.
So what did we have here? Let’s begin with the two assumptions that led to the aforementioned discrepancies made in the 1960s:
1. There was no water near the caves.
2. The creatures were very tall.
Both of these assumptions are now highly suspect. These were the assumptions that led scientists to believe that the creatures weren’t human, thus inspiring the concept of QCD.
Moreover, as years went by every finding revealed in other caves exposed in the same region has shown that these creatures were similar to ordinary human beings. This appears to contradict QCD theory, which assumes that the characteristics of these creatures were much different from those of human beings.
What Scientists Say
Scientists continue to regard QCD as the only possible theory. When confronted with contradictory evidence, they say that the mathematics of these creatures’ DNA sequences is so elaborate that it is likely that even the fastest computers in the world would be unable to ever accurately calculate their properties.
Furthermore, they argue, QCD has been very successful in predicting the growth rate of this desert population. For this reason, they believe, QCD must be true. By the way, there are other models that do not assume the validity of QCD that also achieve accurate growth rate calculations.
Today, mainstream scientists are very happy with QCD theory. Some argue that even if the future fails to reveal explanations that resolve the issues presented above, they would nevertheless avoid examining any new theories. We simply have to live with the knowledge that, since QCD sequences are so complex, we’ll never be able to calculate the properties derived from them with satisfactory precision.
And that, in a nutshell, is QCD theory.
A series of events that are almost perfectly analogous to the cave allegory took place in the exact same period in the field of particle physics. In the epilog of this book you will find the cave allegory retold in almost the exact same words, only this time the allegory applies to physics. Those of you who succeed in following the narrative of this book will note that the particle physics version of this allegory is even more curious.
 Later in this book readers will find a real-world analogy that shows that the comparison is not excessive, and that no attempts are made to disparage scientists.